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Ruin Your Opponent's Day: Oleana's Draw Lock

Hello, my children.  Welcome back to another episode of "How To Ruin Your Opponent's Day" or, how it's sometimes affectionately known, "Why nobody likes to play games with Mostly."  

What we have here is another trip down the road of "draw control."  If you'll recall the last episode, we explored how you could use Orbeetle SSH 19 in conjunction with Alolan Marowak TEU 64 to control your opponent's top-deck and ensure they never draw into something good.  This general strategy, what I call "Top-Deck Control" or "Draw Control," is a strategy which I am a huge fan of.  In fact, I have several decks built around this concept.  I've been reluctant to share them (and, to be honest, play in general) because the prevalence of ADP has essentially ruined the concept of the "single-prize deck" which, if you've been paying attention, is the majority of what I play.  However, I had an epiphany: who cares?  Deck building is fun.  And I love sharing these decks with you, my people.  So, with that in mind, take my hand as we go for a trip down the bitter-loneliness that is the Pokemon Control Deck.

THE DECK

Now, to the uninformed, this is just a pile of crappy cards, some of which nobody has ever heard of.  And, typically, they would be right.  I mean, Nickit SSH 125?  What even is this? Oleana RCL 163?  What manner of garbage is this?  Sandile VIV 107?  SANDILE?!  What kind of loser would play this?  I'll tell you what kind of loser.  THIS kind.  The kind who has dedicated his life to the darkness of control. 

The idea here is to control your opponent's draw until they are holding a hand full of nothing good.  Then dumpster the rest of their deck.  How do we do this, you ask?  Great question.  

THE ENGINE

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Just like last time, we are using Orbeetle SSH 19 to always control what our opponent's draw will be.  However, we are adding in Thievul SSH 126.  Thievul is an interesting card with a very interesting attack: THIEF.  For one darkness energy, you get to look at your opponent's hand and put any card on the bottom of the deck.  This lets us keep our opponent's hand free of anything which we would not want them to have.  

Now, the astute of you might be saying, "Well, ok Mostly.  That's all well and good.  But eventually they're just going to be left with a deck of only good cards.  What do we do then?"  And yes, astute observer.  You are correct.  Eventually our opponent will be left with only the good stuff in their deck.  That's where our master plan kicks in.  

THE CLOSER

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So here we have the "win" condition: mill.  Because of course it's mill.  But it's a special kind of mill.  Because you are spending the entire game making sure that the only cards that are left in your opponent's deck are the "important" cards which they need.  And now you start milling.  This way, you know you are milling those cards that they actually need. 

The thing about these two cards is: the attacks are fairly expensive.  Three and Four energy is actually quite a lot, which is why it is so important to use the lock in order to keep your opponent locked out long enough for you to set up and start milling. 

EARLY GAME TECHS

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I am confident in saying that once you get the deck lock going, it will be almost impossible for your opponent to get out of it.  But, you have to survive long enough to set up your lock.  to that end, we have two different early-game cards to buy you some time.  Lillie's Poke Doll CEC 197 is here because, well, you know why it's here.  It stalls games.  The slightly more interesting Pokemon to talk about is Nickit SSH 125.  He may not seem like much, but his attack is incredibly disruptive.  For one darkness energy, Instigate forces your opponent to shuffle their entire hand and put it on the bottom of their deck.  Then they draw three cards.  This is a very effective attack to use in the early turns.  

THE REST

The rest of the deck is a pretty standard affair. Quick Ball SSH 179, Evolution Incense SSH 163, and Pokemon Communication TEU 152are your search cards.  

Oleana RCL 163 is an alternative to Thievul, and basically does the same thing.  Look at your opponent's hand and put a trainer on the bottom of their deck.  

Marnie CPA 56 and Cynthia & Caitlin CEC 189 are consistency cards, with Cynthia & Caitlin also letting you reuse supporters.  Pokegear 3.0 SSH 174 is an important card, as it helps you find your Oleanas and important supporter cards faster. 

Boss's Orders RCA 154 and Switch EVO 88 round out the gusting and switching cards.  

Finally, Galar Mine RCL 160 helps you strand a Pokemon in the active.  Until we get a better stadium, this is pretty much the go-to for stall/control decks.  

CONCLUSION

To conclude, even though the format is being artificially repressed by the existence of ADP and over similarly-overpowered cards, we can still find ways to have fun while trolling opponents.  If you get the chance, give the deck a try.  It's a little bit tricky to get going.  But once you have the lock-up, I'm pretty sure your opponent won't be able to get out.  But always remember.  Don't gloat, win humbly, and be sympathetic to your opponent.  Remember, they never asked for this.  


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